Ragnarok Odyssey Director Discusses Which Vita Features Have Been Underutilized

By Spencer . October 15, 2012 . 4:50pm


The PlayStation Vita is a powerful piece of hardware that developers like Ragnarok Odyssey director Kazuhiro Irie are just starting to tap into. Since Game Arts has been one of the biggest Vita supporters with three titles already on the market, I asked Irie what features of the Vita are underutilized.


“Well, the CPU has definitely been underutilized. Right now, the GPU uses up the CPU, so I believe some extra fine-tuning will be required in the future,” Irie answered. “By using up the CPU for graphics, though, display tricks like physical manipulation and motion blending become possible, allowing for more and more characters on the screen at once, creating scenarios that really affect the overall feel of the game.”




“I also feel that online functionality and touchscreen functionality have been underutilized on the Vita so far, of course,” Irie added. “For Ragnarok in particular, I’m hoping to diversify the action some more, create even bigger boss battles, further deepen player customization, allow for more than four players to group together in multiplayer, and maybe even add player-vs.-player combat in future installments. As you can see, there’s a lot on my mind for this series!”


And the North American launch of Ragnarok Odyssey is probably at the forefront of his mind. Xseed will release the game here on October 30 in standard and Mercenary Edition flavors.

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  • Roubjon

    Hey, it’s good to know he wants this to be a running series.  As long as the first game does fair in the west, we’ll probably see the rest of them too.

  • Herok♞

    The touchscreen being underutilized must be a joke because I can’t do much on the vita without the touch screen.

    • Brandonmkii

      Game-wise, or system wise? Because 3 out of the 4 vita games I own don’t require any touchscreen input.

      • Herok♞

         system wise.

        • Kefkiroth

          You can change it so that you can use the buttons to control the menu… of course most apps still use the touchscreen…

          • Herok♞

             I know I try to use buttons as much as possible but it still kinda annoying that somethings like switching songs are touch screen only.

  • IshimaruKaito

    i would rele like the PVP sooooooo MUCH! plz make that happen


      yep competition makes the game last longer :3

  • Peace Legacy

    How about the ability to have and play lots of different titles on it?

    • sandra10

      I agree to an extent but I’d say the Vita’s current lineup is too diverse given its size. Then again, it’s Sony. There’s never been much coherence in their lineup.

  • Domii

    I see a lot of potential with this game. I’ve watched a lot of videos of the game on YouTube and it looks pretty decent. I also noticed that there seems to be enemy lock-on with the hunter’s class only, which sucks. I’m going to keep an eye out for this game for sure.

    • Hatsuu

      Enemy lock-on is with all the classes, not just Hunter. Hooray!

      • Domii

        Thanks for letting me know. Now I’m more excited for this. Btw have you played it? If yes, can you tell me your honest thoughts of the game?

        • Hatsuu

          I have! 

          I’ve written a lot about the game in a couple of PSBlog entries (Just search for Ragnarok Odyssey there), as well as answered lots of questions about it in the comments, if you wanted to get more familiar with it! 

          For me personally, I really enjoyed the action, especially the big boss fights. Like the ones that took up your entire screen and beyond big. The gameplay and job classes can be customized to what you prefer, too. The game became a little too challenging for me towards the end as a single-player, but others might enjoy the challenge. For being about jumping and hacking and slashing, the game has you put a lot of thought into choosing your job classes and equipping cards that boost stats. There’s also the fact that you can conquer chapters with online multi-player on a higher difficulty. 

          If you’re a JRPG fan and are looking for a deep story, you won’t find it in RO. It is, at its heart, a solid, enjoyable action/monster hunting oriented title. It does have a story, but the details told through NPC dialogue, which is, for the most part, optional. I’m a JRPG fan myself, so I wish there was a little more there, but I can also forgive since the game does its focus well, which is the action/monter hunting thing. 

          Overall, I’ve enjoyed playing it! I look forward to being able to play it with friends someday once it’s out (and once I own a Vita that doesn’t belong to work, oof).

          • Domii

            Sounds good. Thanks for the reply and I’ll be keeping an eye out for this, specially now that I know that lock-on is available.

  • Mrgrgr and Unacceptable World

    While I kinda agree with all the thing mention there, I am not really sure about touch screen there.

    Ds can do it well for me as it is actually had two screen with each own function. However vita with only screen, I dont think can do extremely well there.

    • Elvick

      Rear touch panel. Just saiyan. 

      Wish the ‘scratching’ or simple tap the screen to do somethings were all given a rear touch option as well. Sometimes it’s easy to touch it when holding it, but being able to have that OPTION would be nice.

  • DanijoEX

    The thing is…I can’t think of anything about the Vita that is underutilized (aside from the CPU).

    Almost many of the games released so far has made use of the system’s features. Although I’m not making sense now…am I?

    • d19xx

      The controls are poorly utilized at this point on most Vita titles. Just seeing the videos at Gamescon pretty much tells us that developers are still clueless how to properly integrate physical buttons and touch functions. 

      There are titles that uses touch screen for QTE sequences, melee combat, etc. In the heat of the action reaching for the touch screen on sudden QTE prompts can really mess the flow of the game.

      • Hinataharem

        Like the duels in Dynasty Warriors Next and the QTE’s in Uncharted. I did not like those

        • d19xx

          Yup those QTE screen swiping are a mess. It was okay before like in God of War, KHBBS, etc. since your thumb doesn’t need to move away from the face buttons. But Vita touch screen QTE’s require you to extend your thumb away from them. 

          Also the Vita’s gyro sensor is used to do the most annoying task. There’s a reason why Naughty Dog stopped using the sixaxis sensor to cross planks and such in Uncharted. 

          • Testsubject909

            Gravity Rush seems to make fine use of the gyro and touch though. A quick thumb swipe rapidly dodges and works just fine, touching the screen with two fingers starts up the gravity slide and that works alright. Mind you I would’ve rather it be assigned to the back rear screen so you could still use the left analog to navigate.

          • Peeka Chu

            The swipe for dodging is annoying though.  Is there any way to change that?  Its the sole reason I haven’t touched GD for more than 15m since picking it up.

          •  you don’t have to flick at the center to dodge… just flick at the edge… it’s not very hard or uncomfortable at all..

  • It is amazing they are already hitting about a sequel for this game…

  • d19xx

    I hope his game does well. The Vita needs quality titles like this.

  • Solomon_Kano

    So they’ve already got plans for more Ragnarok Odyssey? Niiiiiiiiiiiiice. I’ve wanted this since it was announced, so it’s good to know that once I pick it up, that’s just another point in favor of a sequel.

  • doubletaco

    You know what’s OVERutilized? Every single Touch-based feature on this device. Almost every gripe I’ve had with every game I’ve played on the Vita has been due to stupid, unnecessary touch screen controls.

    “You know what would make Project Diva better? Touch screen notes.”

    Yeah, no.

    • Testsubject909

      It’s all about delivery and implementation. Like some hotkey touch feature that aids but isn’t a part of the core portion of the gameplay but also isn’t so out of reach as to cause you to mishandle yourself during the game is a proper and well placed implementation of the touchscreen that actually helps the game play better.

      That’s an example I can come up with right off the top of my mind. As for RTS, you could have quick selection or the ability to zoom the map in and out rapidly or quick select groups or fine adjustment of AoE attacks, such things could work very well with touch.

      • doubletaco

        Of course there CAN be good uses for touch screens. The problem is that the Vita just doesn’t have many, and worse it just feels like Sony’s telling devs they have to use it. The fact that they finally caved to patch in face button control in the system menus speaks volumes.

        The biggest offenders I’ve played are Project Diva F and Gravity Rush. The games I haven’t found myself getting frustrated with are ones that either use it exclusively for menus or don’t use it at all, like Hot Shots Golf.

        •  lol… Gravity Rush is centered on touch screen, and Diva F adds difficutly with the screen. I guess you are just “bad” at those sections. There is only so many notes you can jam on the screen to make you press buttons faster in rhythm games. the scratch section is fun.

    • I actually quite like the scratch sections in Project Diva f…. :D

    • Elvick

      I just hate when the touch screen is the ONLY means to navigate menus, but the games use buttons. Like… really? Why?

      My hands are on the buttons, I push a button to pause, why do I have to touch to navigate? I like touch menus, but not ALL the time. Like Super Monkey Ball, you can use buttons in the game, but not the menus. :/

      Sheesh. Really bugged me in Uncharted, because you had to SLIDE to move left and right. No tapping option… so that wasn’t even well done touch menus. ): Thankfully most have tapping and sliding.

      But yeah, that’s my gripe with touch.

  • all I want is a spellsword class. . . or something to that effect lol

  • If you want to utilize touch more, just add a minigame that lets me massage other avatar’s happy spots. 

    I can dream too, dangit! >_<;

  • Testsubject909

    *Opens wallet then remembers he already pre-ordered the Merc edition*

    Sir, allow me to continue to support you if you do good on your ambitions.

  • Red Veron

    I just bought two versions of this game. I expect a sequel or more DLC.

  • Peeka Chu

    Sounds like he wants to do a full WKC style MMO; with PVP even.  Sounds good – I ADORE WKC 1/2 (despite the abandonment of support at the end).  

    I am totally ready to support this game with my $.  I really hope this game does well.  

    • Elvick

      Damn D3 Publisher… they damaged Level-5, I see people boycotting Level-5’s games because of D3 dropping support for WKC2. ):

      Makes me sad, because Level-5 continues to push out tons of content, and when we get what we do I want it to do well. So we get more of their great stuff…

      Bah… but I would love an WKC style MMO on PS Vita.

  • Romangelo

    the thumbnail pic reminds me Edge Maverick from Star Ocean 4.

  • Spider-Man

    Glad there isn’t much touch screen features. My least favorite feature on my Vita/3DS when it comes to certain games. 

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